this is newsday on the bbc. i'm rico hizon, in singapore. trump's fbi con fusion. new details and contradictions over his sacking of james comey. contradictions over his sacking of james comey. he is a grandstand. the fbi has been in turmoil and you know that, i know that, everybody knows that. indonesia may review its blasphemy laws after a governor is jailed for inciting violence. north korea, the us army commander in the pacific warns of the worst crisis for 30 years. it is stupid for north korea to push and provoke the world like this because the results could be devastating. and a taste of thailand. bangkok's legendary street cooks get a reprieve. glad you could
join us. it is 7am in singapore and 7pm in washington, dc, where donald trump's sacking of the fbi director is mired in more confusion and controversy. with the trump has poured scorn on james controversy. with the trump has poured scorn onjames comey, calling him a showboat and grandstand. he has put pressure on the fbi chief, despite admitting his three conversations as to whether he was under investigation and said he claims he would have sacked james comey anyway, despite previously saying he acted on legal advice. this is what he told nbc. he is a showboat, a grandstand. the fbi has beenin showboat, a grandstand. the fbi has been in turmoil. everybody knows that. you take a look at the fbi a year ago, it was in virtual turmoil less tha n year ago, it was in virtual turmoil less than a year ago. it hasn't recovered from that. on monday you
left with the deputy attorney general. did you ask for a recommendation? what i did was i was going to fire james comey. my decision. you made the decision already? i was going to fire james comey. he always maintained james comey. he always maintained james comey lost the confidence of his staff, it is another damaging move the man who has taken over the fbi has denied the senators that was the case. i hold james comey in the highest regard and i have the highest regard and i have the highest respect for his abilities and his integrity and it has been the greatest privilege and honour of my professional life to work with him. ican my professional life to work with him. i can tell you all so that director comey enjoyed broad support within the fbi and still does to this day. our washington correspondent explains the intriguing developments today in the aftermath of the sacking of james
comey. the problem for the white house is that as president is trump points out and as director kobe points out in his farewell letter last night, it is perfectly within the president's right to sack the director of the fbi. —— director comey and it seems, as donald trump said in that interview, that he wa nted said in that interview, that he wanted to do it from the start. the problem for the white house is that their handling of this, first of all they seemed surprised by the fallout when the announcement was made, and second there have been extreme inconsistencies. on the one hand we hear from the inconsistencies. on the one hand we hearfrom the president inconsistencies. on the one hand we hear from the president himself that hear from the president himself that he wanted to sack james comey hear from the president himself that he wanted to sackjames comey on day one and hear from the white house over the last several days we've heard that there was a timeline of events. we heard from the white house podium and from sarah harper b sanders that it was the attorney general who came up with the report detailing james comey‘s deficiencies
and that was the catalyst for him being attacked. that was what the vice president told reporters yesterday. the problem seems to be the inconsistencies and the white house is unable to come to some kind of agreement as to whyjames comey was sacked and why he was sacked this week. what is the general sentiment right now in washington regarding this ongoing controversy and these inconsistencies from the white house? well, the problem is the headlines keep rolling on. so every time you open up a new newspaper someone every time you open up a new newspaper someone is commentating on finding some other white house aid who has spoken to them anonymously. so there are more and more stories the white house seems to be leaking. we tried today during the white house briefing, sarah huckabee sanders tried very hard to move on.
but when you have such inconsistencies, you will have a media jumping on those and wondering exactly what the story is. is there a cover—up? and other reason why james comey was shocked aside? when it comes to the rush of investigation, we are told that things will continue. that during the hearing the current acting fbi general said the russian investigation will forge ahead. but then donald trump hasjust investigation will forge ahead. but then donald trump has just tweeted, saying russia must be laughing up their sleeves, watching as the us test itself apart over democratic excuses the election. does he support the russian investigation? as white house officials told us later today, or doesn't he? as white house officials told us latertoday, or doesn't he? it as white house officials told us later today, or doesn't he? it is difficult to discern the presidential opinion when we have a different one coming from the white house podium. that was laura bicker in washington. in other news:, saudi arabia's government has told its ministries to base out the employment of foreign nationals. there are
currently about 70,000 ex— patriots in the kingdom's public sector and the aim is to replace them with saudi citizens over the next three yea rs saudi citizens over the next three years ina saudi citizens over the next three years in a bid to tackle unemployment among the local people. the former head of china's national bureau of statistics has pleaded guilty to accepting the equivalent of $22 million in bribes. the man is the latest top official to be investigated as part of a government crackdown. china's anticorru ption agency said that apart from accepting bribes he stayed at expensive hotels and in their words exchanged powerful sex. the military government in taiwan has given facebook until next tuesday to take down content critical of the monarchy orface down content critical of the monarchy or face prosecution down content critical of the monarchy orface prosecution —— in thailand. they want the social networking site to remove about 130 items. thailand has strict regulations that protect the
monarchy from even mild criticism. india's supreme court is considering whether to band the practice of insta nt whether to band the practice of instant divorce under the —— under the law in which a muslim man can divorce his wife saying the word for divorced three times. it remains legal amongst india's muslim minority. foreign ministers of the eight countries within the arctic circle have agreed for immediate action to reduce greenhouse gases and continue certainty of america's climate change policy. the secretary of state rex tillerson told ministers meeting in alaska that the us would not rush to make a decision. indonesia's justice
indonesia'sjustice minister indonesia's justice minister says indonesia'sjustice minister says he will review the country's as any laws following the controversial jailing of the governor for blasphemy and inciting violence. the un human rights council has also raised concerns at case. the former governor, known as ahok, filed an appeal after being sentenced to two yea rs appeal after being sentenced to two years injail. he was appeal after being sentenced to two years in jail. he was a appeal after being sentenced to two years injail. he was a christian and was beaten in the jakarta elections last month by a muslim rival. let's cross over to bali and speak to a journalist and award—winning documentary maker. damien, they do so much forjoining us damien, they do so much forjoining us newsday. mr ahok has been sentenced to two years in jail and now you have the justice ministry reviewing the blasphemy laws. what is your reaction to this? i was very shocked when i watched and saw the whole process of what
happened. this blasphemy law is really... it needs to be repealed soon. really... it needs to be repealed soon. it is a sad day for indonesians. they have been known as a country of democracy, of tolerance. despite 90% of the 250 million people in indonesia being muslims. we have to stand for this. we have to repeal this blasphemy law and bring justice not only to ahok but also the minority in indonesia, like chinese... there now seems to be pressure from the international community for the government to review this blasphemy law. do you think thejustice review this blasphemy law. do you think the justice ministry will give into this pressure and we could see amendments to this blasphemy law? yes, if the international community keeps pressing the indonesian
government to repeal this law then i believe it will work. it will work. this must be done by the international community also to put pressure on indonesia in this case. this is very important. we have seen what this law can do for the country. it divided is the country in sucha country. it divided is the country in such a way —— defiance. so it isn't just the in such a way —— defiance. so it isn'tjust the problem of indonesia, it's a problem of the world. what is your concern right now about islamist extremism in your country and could this impact the christian minorities in indonesia? it depends on how the government handled this matter. if the president handles this right, then this won't be a real problem for minority communities. but if this problem
continues, then something fairly bad might happen. we have seen that there has been a lot of candlelight rally is going on in the last couple of days over indonesia, supporting ahok. they want him to be free from this sentence. or at least for him to be out ofjail for his case. this good grow up. if nothing happens over the next few days of this weekend, next week it could blow up into something much bigger. we will have to leave it there. that you so much for your insights on this issue. damien demtra, —— damien dematra, joining us us from bali. the us commander in the pacific has issued a stark warning. ina the pacific has issued a stark warning. in a bbc interview, the
general described the crisis with north korea as the worst for nearly 30 years and warned of the risk of a miscalculation resulting in catastrophic consequences. general brown has been speaking to my colleague. i will tell you this. it isa colleague. i will tell you this. it is a very serious situation. north korea has been very belligerent, despite the unanimous united nations effo rts despite the unanimous united nations efforts to say, hey, stop this provocative behaviour. i've been dealing in this region about 30 yea rs dealing in this region about 30 years and it is about the most serious i've seen it will stock clearly ki m serious i've seen it will stock clearly kim jong—un is trying to get capability to reach out with nuclear weapons, chemical weapons. he capability to reach out with nuclear weapons, chemicalweapons. he has launched well over 100 missile test —— test. his father in 19 years only did about 35 in total, so he is clearly going through a capability. it isa clearly going through a capability. it is a very serious situation. you
said that north korea was the issue that worried you most, it is the thing that keeps you up at night. that worried you most, it is the thing that keeps you up at nightm is that bad? it is. i have about 100,000 offices throughout the region, about 20,000 in korea and all of the soldiers that are under my command, if something went that way would —— it would happen very quickly. so i work the readiness on a daily basis. when you look at the effort the —— in the pacific, it has had real insecurity over the past few years because of the military forces that are keeping its able so that the key aspect. he talked about the missile test. we've seen on a celebration of those. what do you think is actually happening? is this king john —— kim jong—un testing capabilities in the region?|j wouldn't capabilities in the region?” wouldn't want is regulated with his thinking but i will say that it is
provocative, dangerous, belligerent behaviour. there are a lot of lives at stake and it is very sad when you see this situation. people are starving. a nation having been really looking at that nation for a long time and been on the perimeter, seeing the dire straits it is in. and yet he is pouring all of this money into the capability militarily. this is newsday on the bbc. still to come: the return of the songbird. the rare creatures being reintroduced into a reserve in australia. the pope was shot, the pope will live. that was the essence of the appalling news from rome this afternoon, that, as an italian television commentator put it, terrorism has come to the vatican. the man they called the butcher of lyon, klaus barbie, went on trial today in the french town where he was the gestapo chief
in the second world war. winnie mandela never looked like a woman just sentenced to six years injail. the judge told mrs mandela there was no indication she felt even the slightest remorse. the chinese government has called for an all—out effort to help the victims of a powerful earthquake, the worst to hit the country for 30 years. the computer deep blue has tonight triumphed over the world chess champion, gary kasparov. it is the first time a machine has defeated a reigning world champion in a classical chess match. america's first legal same—sex marriages have been taking place in massachusetts. god bless america! hello, iam rico hello, i am rico hizon. hello, iam rico hizon. you hello, i am rico hizon. you are watching newsday on the bbc. the top stories. donald trump has been
defending his decision to fire the director of the fbi. in an interview with a us tv network he called james comey a showboat and a grandstand and said the fbi was in turmoil. indonesia's justice and said the fbi was in turmoil. indonesia'sjustice minister said and said the fbi was in turmoil. indonesia's justice minister said he will look into the blasphemy laws. a high courtjudge will look into the blasphemy laws. a high court judge in will look into the blasphemy laws. a high courtjudge in london has ordered a russian billionaire to pay his estranged wife more than half $1 billion in what is thought to be the country's record divorce settlement. that story is popular on bbc.com. and now we take a look at the front pages. the china daily. the top story is a phone conversation between south korea's new president and china's resident, xijinping. xijinping
talked about the major concerns of china. they agreed to meet at a date and set positive signals for bilateral ties. the south china morning post of hong kong reporting on anti—terrorist exercises. more than 300 police mounted a large—scale drill in preparation for the next visit of international visitors next month to mark the 20th anniversary of the handover. and finally, singapore. they are reporting on a concert by the british pop star, ed sheeran. these two were among the first to get there hands on tickets as fans queued for more than 70 hours for the show. big fans. now, have a listen to this. bird sounds. 0h,
those beautiful sounds. they have not been heard on that reserve for 140 years. that changes this weekend. it is called a white head. it is small and will be introduced to auckland as part of a habitat restoration programme. they are coming from a sanctuary not far from auckland on another island. adam willets is a rangerfrom auckland on another island. adam willets is a ranger from there and joins us now. thank you so much for joining us on newsday. tell us what is so special about these songbirds. good morning. these birds are really special. we don't have many birds
that flock around like that due to isolation for millions and millions of years. most of our birds have no mammalian predators so they tend to live on the ground. they became very heavy and very flightless. we did not have many that flocked like canaries in the canopies. it has been 140 years since these birds have been in the northern region over the top of north island in new zealand. that is 5—6 generations. my great grandparents have never seen this bird that used to exist in new zealand before humans brought ground dwelling animals. birds had no defences against these guys when they came. it wiped everything out
big time. humans brought mammals. these birds are very chirpy and very high—energy. no one really on the mainland of new zealand has seen them for a very, very long time. 140 yea rs. them for a very, very long time. 140 years. i them for a very, very long time. 140 yea rs. i love them for a very, very long time. 140 years. i love songbirds. explain how you are bringing them over as they are not flying over the use. what is the process? we are on an isolated island. our reservation are world leaders in making these islands predator free and removing all of the pests and predators and then bringing them back in securing the space. it was a vision to come forward to this day that one day we could clean up the mainland reserves
and get predators down really low. now we have our reserves on the mainland. area now we have our reserves on the mainland. are a lot of community groups around new zealand are doing a wonderfuljob groups around new zealand are doing a wonderful job cleaning groups around new zealand are doing a wonderfuljob cleaning up the mainland of new zealand, around the cities and around the regions so we can bring them back, these birds that were once restricted to offshore predator free islands. access to the public was very restricted. now we can bring them back. you need to get a permit from the department. we have a good government agency. you can get a career in conservation. we are lucky. adam. indeed, we are looking forward to these songbirds on your island. thank you very much for joining us and good luck with the move. adam there. if you have been
to bangkok, you will know the street food is a major attraction. many view it as a part of the traditional character of the city. now, hygiene standards have been raised. after protesting, they have been given a rough brief. we have the details. —— reprieve. we have come down to this road in chinatown in bangkok, one of the most famous places to eat street food in the city. i have brought with me almost the ideal companion. she writes a blog about the street food here. she has been doing it for
many, food here. she has been doing it for any food here. she has been doing it for many, many years. why is this street so important for this kind of food? the chinese first brought street food to thailand. the kinds of food they brought, noodles and the like, at the kind of dishes that have changed thai food forever and are still served along the road today. let us try some of these dishes. we have got a classic street stall here. what are they cooking? fried noodles, fried rice. anything that tastes great. he has his workstation perfectly set out. this is a very asian kitchen, as you can see. perfectly set out. this is a very asian kitchen, as you can seem perfectly set out. this is a very asian kitchen, as you can see. it is on the steps of a bank, isn't it?
yeah. that is a classic thai dish, isn't it? yes, a classic thai—chinese dish. it has everything. how is the first taste? yum. delicious. it is the best in the world. full of flavour. i love it. ultimately, what we are fighting about is the future of bangkok food. i feel it is something very dry if they go against the grain of the city. and the culture as well. as much as we complain about the clutter in the chaos, this is what defines us. this street food is thai
culture. . it would be a shame to get rid of street food. the problem is, if they do get rid of it, even for most of the city, you would lose a big part of the culture, where everyone ate the street food. it was common ground for everyone. that would be gone.” that would be gone. i envy you, jonathan. i love thai food. please bring it here. and with that, we end this edition of newsday. goodbye for now. hello. i have not used this particular sphere for some time.
through the british isles, there was no need. tropical on the coast. to the south—west of england, yes, a wet sphere very much the order of the day. sank an area of low pressure throwing more rain to the british isles. —— thank. you may have noticed it in the south of england and wales. and increasingly humid feel. a change to the regime increasingly dominant in the southern half of the british isles. stepping out first thing, then— 11-12 - 13. -- 10-. stepping out first thing, then— 11—12 — 13. —— 10—. further north, a fresh fresh feel about proceedings. details about the journey to work. 12- 13 details about the journey to work. 12— 13 degrees widely across southern counties. a grey start to the day. not too much in the way of
sunshine. some showers at this stage. further north, a better chance of seeing sunshine in the north of england and getting up and the west of scotland. rain to be had widely in northern ireland. a distinction in scotland between the west and east. low cloud. it will be around for a good part of the day. notjust around for a good part of the day. not just eastern scotland, around for a good part of the day. notjust eastern scotland, but the east of england as well. onshore breeze cloud sitting low in the atmosphere. cold through the day. further south, heat comes through. showers turning quite sharp. the odd rumble of thunder. no fears of that in the north—east of scotland. 9— 10 degrees. leaden skies. showers and spells of rain. eventually things will turn a bit fresher as we switch the breeze coming in from the
atlantic, not the continent. sunday, disturbed weather. further south, isolated showers. dry weather. saturday night, this area of cloud and rain going across the british isles. it will be across eastern areas. we are importing fresh air across the british isles. once that is away, a day of sunny spells and some really sharp showers. this is bbc world news. president trump defends sacking the fbi chief james comey, saying he would have dismissed him even if thejustice department officials had not recommended it. the acting fbi director said staff had not lost confidence in him and said the investigation into claims of russian pollution in president trump's election would continue. the party of french president—elect
emmanuel macron has unveiled the list of candidates for next month's parliamentary elections. more than half have never held elected office and half are women. and the arctic climate change summit is trending on bbc .com. foreign ministers of the eight arctic capital nations are meeting in alaska to discuss climate change. the us is chairing the summit but many are angry with the way the summit has begun. now on bbc news, it's time for hardtalk.